Step Down Fitzgerald

A summary of the new amendment to the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) bill was published last week by Frances Fitzgerald, who currently holds the office of Irish Minister for Justice, ushered in after her predecessor, who was working to extend the rights of single fathers, was pushed out of office under very dubious circumstances.

While we have yet to see the specifics of the bill, the headers are as follows:

None of these are particularly illuminating, we'll have to wait and see the details, but one item above is worth a closer look after comments made by Frances Fitzgerald the previous week. That is the head entitled "Introduction of new Harassment Order".

Fitzgerald bragged in the Irish Times that

New domestic violence legislation will consolidate and reform domestic violence legislation, “closing the gaps” in current law, the Minister said. The new law will allow Ireland to ratify the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence, known as the Istanbul Convention.

The convention is the first European treaty on violence against women and domestic violence. It requires that member states work to prevent violence, protect victims and prosecute perpetrators.

Ms Fitzgerald said the new legislation would include measures to develop “more flexible” emergency barring orders, which had been seen as one of the challenges in the convention, given property rights under the Irish Constitution.

Hang on a minute there.

This "Minister for Justice" is proposing legislation specifically to sidestep the Irish constitution in the name of an ideologically bigoted document, presumably because she knows the Irish public would quite correctly laugh her out of it in the referendum needed to actually change the constitution?

That speaks volumes on the respect Fitzgerald has for the constitution of our nation. That is to say, none.

Under no circumstances should anyone willing to treat the voice of the Irish public and the founding constitution of the Irish Republic with such blatant contempt be in a position to legislate or influence politics in this country.

Step down, Fitzgerald. This nation was ruled by a queen in the not so distant past, we don't want another even if you were one.

And you aren't.

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